Third one-day international, Cuttack:
India 242-3 (42.4 ovs) beat Sri Lanka 239 (44.2 ovs) by seven wickets
Tendulkar has now scored 69, 43 and 96 in the three one-day internationals
Sachin Tendulkar struck a brilliant unbeaten 96 as India eased to a seven-wicket win over Sri Lanka in the third one-day international in Cuttack.
Tendulkar, supported by Virender Sehwag (44) and the rest of the top order, struck 13 fours off 104 balls as India made 240-3 in reply to Sri Lanka's 239.
Sri Lanka's innings got off to a superb start with Upul Tharanga hitting 73 as he led them to 165-1 at one stage.
But Ravindra Jadeja took 4-32 as they collapsed and India claimed a 2-1 lead.
The fourth match of the five-game series takes place in Kolkata on Thursday, with a potential decider in Delhi on Sunday.
India were captained by Sehwag, with regular skipper Mahendra Dhoni banned for two one-dayers because of their slow over rate in Friday's second contest.
He lost the toss and Sri Lanka immediately took control as Tharanga and the in-form Tillakaratne Dilshan got off to a flier.
Dilshan, fresh from his match-winning hundred in Nagpur, smashed 41 off only 18 balls but he was denied the chance of a third successive ton when Ashish Nehra had him caught behind.
Kumar Sangakkara came together with Tharanga and they put on exactly 100 to push Sri Lanka into an enviable position, until India hit back in stunning fashion.
Three wickets fell for only eight runs and the visitors never recovered as Jadeja and Ishant Sharma (2-63) cleaned up the middle order and helped to end their innings with more than five overs to go.
Sehwag hammered 44 off 28 balls to get India's reply off to the perfect start and Tendulkar found support in Gautam Gambhir (32) and Yuvraj Singh (23) as Sri Lanka's bowlers toiled.
With the kind of start they got, I was praying they wouldn't get 350 or 400 on the board
Chanaka Welegedara was the pick with 2-35, but Dinesh Kartik finished the job off as he hit 36 from 32 balls, including the winning boundary, to leave Tendulkar four short of his 46th one-day international century.
"With the kind of start they got, I was praying they wouldn't get 350 or 400 on the board," said Sehwag.
"But we were constantly looking to take wickets and Ashish Nehra did a fantastic job in the powerplay.
"Once he got Dilshan out, Harbhajan and Jadeja did their job very well and the game turned on its head."
Sangakkara admitted Sri Lanka had effectively lost the game with the bat.
"We need to take a good look at ourselves as individuals and take a lot more responsibility when we get out there again," he said.
"We have got to keep fighting and we have got to come back."